Alief ISD is helping kids with ADHD and behavioral problems

ALIEF (KTRK) -- Motion is helping kids improve test scores and stay more focused on school work, according to one Houston area school district that's on the front-line of helping kids with ADHD and behavioral problems.

"Just think when we were kids, the teacher said stop, sit down, turn around, sit still," said Best Elementary school principal Renee Canales. "Now we are like, get up, move, jump, run."

Best Elementary is one of at least 14 schools in Alief ISD that have adopted Action Based Learning, ABL, labs or classrooms that include pedaling desks, elliptical, dancing stations, and other moving desks.

There is a science behind the ABL program.

When kids perform movements, they create pathways in their brains.

And when they're learning math, science or reading at the same time, that subject matter "sticks" better in their minds. Canales said the program, which was introduced three years ago, is working.

"Knowing that our school had a history of low performing, I knew that we had to think outside the box and bring in some innovative programs," said Canales. "We've had tremendous gains academically with our STAR scores. Our attendance has increased. We have reduced our office referrals."

Canales said the kinesthetic desks are not for every student. There are regular desks in all classrooms. Teachers have been able to incorporate rotations so that every student gets a chance to work on the moving desks.
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